In this episode, Dr. Michael Maddaus interviews Christopher M. Barnes, PhD, professor of organizational behavior at the University of Washington and expert in the impact of sleep deprivation. Dr. Barnes takes a deep dive into the impact of sleep deprivation on leadership performance and behavior, as well as its effects on interpersonal relationships. “When you sleep better, everything in your life will get better—your health, your work, your relationships, your general happiness,” he said. Dr. Barnes examines how important sleep is to overall health and mental wellness. Lack of sleep in some careers—cardiothoracic surgery in particular—often is worn as a badge of honor. But there are serious health consequences that have been linked to not getting enough sleep, including heart attacks, cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, weight gain, diabetes, depression, and anxiety. Dr. Barnes explains that when it comes to sleep, the path to success involves both quantity and quality. Listeners also will learn about the concept of “social jetlag” and hear a “menu” of steps to take that will help achieve good sleep hygiene. Dr. Barnes cautions against turning your bed into a home theater (watching tv), a library (reading a book), and/or a lounge (talking on the phone), and recommends banishing all of those activities from your bed, which in turn, will “preserve and strengthen” the important link between bed and sleep. “The Resilient Surgeon” is a program from the Society designed to inspire cardiothoracic surgeons to be their best selves, in and out of the OR, using scientifically proven tools and recovery strategies of the world’s top performers.
Dr. Barnes can be reached on Twitter @chris24barnes. View his TED Talk, “Sleep and Work.” Learn more about STS wellness efforts at sts.org/wellness.